The other day one of my fellow badgers invited me to join her on a day trip to Haworth, the home of the Brontë sisters. It’s about a 20 minute train rain, which only cost around £8 round trip. What a steal. Anywho, so I decided to go because what else am I going to to on a Wednesday afternoon? Class? Lolz, jokes. Another thing I’ve picked up on since being here is that school right now is more of a side job. A hobby, if you will. I only have class for six hours a week, and zerooooo class on Wednesdays and Fridays. Literary Wednesdays to places of historical and literary value? YES PLEASE.
My buddy, Holly, was the perfect person make this trip with. She had everything planned out, which was needed for a small town like this where everything is spread out. Once we got to Keighley we took a bus to Haworth and BAM, it was like time traveling back to the 1800s. The old little main road in Haworth leading up to the Bronte’s parish reminded me of Hogsmeade in Harry Potter. We walked around the church and graveyard, so much history in so little time!
So, here’s what we learned.
The Brontes moved to Haworth in 1820, where Patrick – their father – was appointed to lead the church. The Haworth Parsonage became the home of the young writers, fostering a creative space for Charlotte, Emily, Anne and Branwell to write. The building now houses the Bronte museum, and remains basically unchanged from when the family lived there. The second you walk in the foyer it is as if you are taking a step back in time.
The first stop in the house is the dining room where it all happened, the room where their famous works such as “Wuthering Heights” and “Jane Eyre” were written. In fact, the table the novel were written on stood in the middle of the room, with an “E” Emily had carved into the wood in her youth. It was eerie, I felt like I didn’t belong, as if I were intruding by being in such personal space. To add to the eeriness, a sign on the wall read that it is believed that Emily died on the couch in the corner of the room. That’s creepy, yo. I was creeped. In a good, historical way.
Following the museum tour we trekked for three hours around the moors. Simply breathtaking. I could see how easy it must have been for them to get inspired in a place so beautiful. Up on the hills, with farms and hills as far as the eye can see. I felt so insignificant in comparison. It was one of those moments where I had to just stand back and for a second and reflect “I am here right now. On a Wednesday afternoon.” There was no reason to pinch myself because I already knew this wasn’t real life. This couldn’t be my life right now. How did I, Sarah Hopefl, end up abroad, having class six hours a week, and the means to travel, hiking the Moors of Haworth and looking over the exact view that some of the greatest writers got their inspiration to write some of the greatest literature?
No, this was not real life indeed.
By simply breathing in the air I was tingling with inspiration, but not in the way I usually do. The drawing room in the house, the moors -it all felt sacred, and it made me want to be a better writer. I want to be creative. I felt if I breathed in enough of the air creativity would fill up in me and hopefully give me an ounce of what the Bronte sisters had. I feel like sometimes I’m all talk. What are you, people ask. Oh, I’m a journalist. The words come out of my mouth so easily, but sometimes it feels so out of reach. Can I make it as a journalist? Am I good enough to call myself a writer? Or am I just posing? Who calls me ‘writer’? (Breaks my pate across. Plucks off my beard and blows it in my face? Tweaks me by the nose? Gives me the lie i’ th’ throat As deep as to the lungs?….).
It’s terrifying, but exciting.
Who knows if I’ll make it. But as long as I get days like these in my life I can’t think of wanting anything else.
This post can also be found on my website here.